Vindictus is a 3D fantasy MMORPG with action-packed gameplay and massive bosses to battle. Choose from nine distinct characters and fight through hordes of monsters on instanced stages.
Release Date: October 13, 2010 (NA)
PvP: Duels / Arenas
Pros: +Real-time combat that requires skill. +Great skill animations and character designs. +Varied character options.
Cons: -Gender-locked characters. -Stages must be repeated multiple times. -Unbalanced and underdeveloped PvP feature.
Vindictus, also known as Mabinogi Heroes in Asia, is a hack-and-slash MMORPG powered by Valve’s Source engine. The game mixes instanced mission stages with persistent cities that serve as hubs for players to meet up and form raiding parties. Gameplay is centered around small groups of players battling difficult bosses, structured somewhat similarly to the Monster Hunter series. Vindictus is based loosely on Celtic mythology and has gorgeous character animations and environments. There is no ‘holy trinity’ of DPS, Tank, and Healer in this game; all characters are meant to deal damage and be self-sufficient, and with enough effort and practice, virtually all of the content can be done solo with any character.
The gameplay is where Vindictus truly shines; characters are controlled in a manner closer to Monster Hunter or Dark Souls, with stamina bars and HP bars that can deplete after only a handful of attacks. The key feature that sets Vindictus apart from most other MMOs is the use of active defensive mechanisms, such as split-second invulnerability and blocking moves, along with hitboxes that very closely follow attack animations for both enemy and player, which are tighter even than other MMOs that are noted for real-time combat, such as Guild Wars 2.
Vindictus Key Features
- Real-Time Combat – gameplay requires proper timing and positioning to land or dodge attacks.
- Variety of Characters – 9 playable characters, each with a distinct playstyle.
- Interactive Environments – carry and toss crates, barrels, and other pieces of terrain. Avoid traps and other environmental hazards.
- Strategic Boss Battles – pieces of bosses can be broken off with targeted attacks, sometimes affecting boss behavior and drop tables.
- Advance Alone or With Friends – all characters can progress through almost all content alone, albeit with varying levels of effort.
Vindictus Featured Video
Characters serve as the game’s ‘class’ structure. Each character has their own theme when it comes to skills and some characters have different weapons available to them that will determine their specific playstyle.
- Lann – a nimble twin sword user that can also use twin short spears. Lann has quick invincibility-frame dodges and naturally fast attacks. His signature move, Gliding Fury, does great damage and requires skillful positioning and timing to use. Succeeding with Lann requires high aggression and quick thinking.
- Fiona – shield-and-sword character with unparalleled defense. Fiona can use a longsword or a one-handed hammer in conjunction with either a tower shield or small shield. Sword-wielding Fionas focus on blocking and counter-attacking with her shield, while peppering the enemy with other attacks in between. Hammer Fionas move slower and inflict greater damage, with chargeable and repeatable attacks.
- Evie – mage-type character that staves and scythes. Using staves gives Evie the ability to cast a variety of elemental spells at range as well as heal her party to a limited degree. Scythe users place curse-like spells on their opponents that have varying effects and can teleport short distances.
- Karok – a heavy brawler that can absorb the enemy’s attacks while performing his own attacks. He can stop bosses mid-attack with a move called ‘Clash,’ affording the team DPS time and in some cases saving the team from an otherwise dangerous attack.
- Kai – the ranger class if there was one. Kai uses bows and revolving crossbows to deal damage from afar. His bow can switch between an auto-aiming short bow and a manually aimed longbow that can make bosses flinch.
- Vella – can use twin swords and twin chainblades. A sword-equipped Vella moves swiftly and excels at avoiding damage. They also have two powerful counter-attack moves to respond to incoming melee and ranged attacks. Chain Vellas have purely ranged attacks that rival Kai’s ability to attack from a distance.
- Hurk – greatsword wielder. Hurk’s gameplay is defined by absorbing incoming damage and using both stamina and HP to fuel a constant onslaught of attacks.
- Lynn – fast-moving polearm user. Lynn can't grab, but possesses a powerful Five Finger Death attack that deals heavy damage and stuns opponents. While she lacks boss control, Lynn has multiple high damage active skills.
- Arisha – INT-based spell-sword character. Powerful attacks require mana, a resource unique to Arisha. While her passive defence will likely be lacking, her active defence abilities (a block, an invulnerability-frame dodge, and a teleport) are powerful and reliable.
By Adrian Micayabas
A prequel of sorts to the popular MMORPG Mabinogi, Vindictus, also known as Mabinogi Heroes, is a free-to-play 3D action MMORPG developed by Nexon’s internal studio devCAT with a unique combat system among MMOs and a darker personality than its predecessor. Vindictus saw its first release in Korea on January 21, 2010, and made its way to North America in October of the same year. Since then, the game has been made available in Europe, Japan, China, and Australia.
As a prequel it shares many items from Mabinogi’s setting, including its Celtic lore.
What You’re Fighting
As per Vindictus’s background, you’ll mostly be
How You’ll Do It
At its most basic, Vindictus characters deal damage using a combination of light attacks (‘normals’) and heavy attacks (‘smashes’). All of them operate on three common resources: HP for absorbing hits, Stamina for performing offensive and defensive actions, and SP, which is gained by attacking and allows the character to perform special attacks. Characters may also have resources unique to them, such as mana, ability cooldowns, and buffs.
What You’ll Fight With
There are many types of equippable items and many ways you can modify each of them, but the basic types are armor, weapons, and accessories.
Armors are divided by weight class into cloth, light, heavy, and plate armor, with cloth providing the least defense and generally belonging to INT classes, to plate, providing the most defense. Early on, the benefits of lighter armor may not be apparent, but in the end game lighter armor is associated with offensive power at the expense of defense, while plate armor offers more defense at the expense of offense. Armor is sometimes unique to certain characters, but many are shared between several characters. Weapons are by and large unique to each character, barring twin swords which are used by both Lann and Vella. Weapons are by far the single most important piece of equipment on your character, and provide you with the majority of your offensive stats. Accessories provide extra stats, and some perform a variety of special functions, like the ability to resist deadly blows, regain HP when dealing damage, or gaining SP periodically.
Bang For Your Buck
Cash shop transactions are conducted through Nexon’s secondary currency, NX. NX allows the purchase of a wide variety of in-game items, some cosmetic, some providing a sort of in-game convenience, and some improving your in-game stats. Cosmetic items include different hair styles, ‘Inner Armor’ (a layer of clothing beneath your regular armor that is exposed when your armor breaks due to damage in battle), dyes for armor (note that dyeing is also possible with gold), and ‘Outfitters,’ which is a set of armor or clothing that replaces the appearance of your regular armor. Other available items are pets that may buff you and collect item drops for you automatically, badges that increase defense, capsules that increase XP gained and extra battles to be fought, and runes that protect your equipment from risky enhancements and enchantments. NX is absolutely unnecessary to play and complete all of the content in Vindictus, but it may make some hurdles easier to clear.
Final Verdict – Great
The combat in Vindictus is like no other MMO out there, and if you enjoy the gameplay style and are looking for an MMO to play, there is no better alternative available in the NA region. The game appeals to the improvement of player skills just as much, if not more, than gear progression. If you find yourself able to appreciate how Vindictus controls, then sticking with the game is encouraged, but if it’s not your thing, then it’s likely nothing else will keep you coming back for more.
Vindictus System Requirements
Operating System: Windows XP / Vista / 7 / 8
CPU: Intel Core 2 Duo E4600 2.4 GHz / AMD Athlon 64 X2 5000+
Video Card: GeForce 7800 GTX / Radeon X800 XT
RAM: 1 GB
Hard Disk Space: 10 GB
Operating System: Windows 7 / 8
CPU: Intel Core i3 540 / AMD Phenom 2 X4 or better
Video Card: Nvidia GeForce GTS 250 / ATI Radeon HD 4850 or better
RAM: 4 GB or more
Hard Disk Space: 10 GB or more
Vindictus Music & Soundtrack
Composer: Shin Dong Hyuc
Closed Beta Date: August 10, 2010 - August 24, 2010 (NA)
Early Access Open Beta: September 15, 2010 - October 5, 2010 (NA)
Open Beta Date: October 13, 2010 - October 27, 2010 (NA)
Korea: January 21, 2010
Europe: October 5, 2011
Japan: November 30, 2011
Taiwan: December 23, 2011
China: December, 23, 2011 (TitanCity)
Australia: November 15, 2012
Development History / Background:
Despite the completely different art and playstyle, Vindictus is a prequel to the anime-inspired MMORPG Mabinogi. Set several hundred years prior to the events in Mabinogi, Vindictus was originally titled Mabinogi Heroes. The name was changed to Vindictus for the North American and European versions to better appeal to a Western audience.
An alternative version of Vindictus was announced on July 15, 2010, subtitled eXtreme Edition. This version includes a combo system, slower bosses, higher player stamina, and other tweaks to make gameplay faster paced. On April 24, 2014 Nexon closed the eXtreme Edition servers in Korea, but they remain active in Taiwan, China, and Europe.